Recent studies by Thomas Piketty and others have told us a lot more about income among the richest 1 percent in America. But doing the same for America’s poorest is a much murkier proposition. Laurence Chandy and Cory Smith weigh in on five key questions raised by his latest research.
I don’t know precisely when it happened, but it feels to me like the raging vilification of the poor we’re seeing these days is a fairly recent phenomenon.
It, for sure, feels like it comes from one side and only one side of the socio-political spectrum.
I don’t understand how some people think cutting back on social programs is supposed to miraculously make conditions better. Do we really think there are millions and millions of Americans who "like" being poor; who "choose" to be poor; who would rather live on 2 dollars or even a whopping 16 dollars a day, then to have an opportunity to learn a skill or to work for living wages so they can have some small taste of something better for themselves and their loved ones?
When I start seeing corporations sending their human resource recruiters and hiring managers out into the street to hire and train homeless and impoverished people to work living wage jobs…..
When what we call a minimum wage actually becomes a living wage even if that means – EGAD!! – the owners, executives, and shareholders make a little less money…..
When there’s even the tiniest bit of empirical evidence that trickle-down economics is anything but the greatest lie ever perpetrated on a gullible society, then I might start accepting that tax cuts for the wealthy coupled with cuts to social programs work for anyone but the rich.
Until that day comes, how about we stop blaming the poor and the working poor and start electing people who will, yes, take from the rich and give to the poor.
I suspect there are libertarian and conservative narratives out there to dispute this, but as far as the rest of us are concerned, Robin Hood, while mythical, was and still is a hero to the rest of us.